Versailles Curator Caves to Cultural Conservatives Over Murakami Exhibition

10/01/2010 4:39 PM |

Takashi Murakami Versailles

I keep blogging about the kerfuffle surrounding the Takashi Murakami exhibition at Versailles because it so succinctly underlines how a minority of culturally myopic loudmouths can inhibit what is, and should continue to be one of the most culturally rich countries in the world. (Something we don’t seem to have too many issues with here, but then again…) And now it looks like those nay-saying, newness-fearing voices have won out in France. The Art Newspaper reports that the Murakami exhibition (which stays up through December 12) will be the last installation of contemporary art inside the Palace of Versailles.

Its director, Jean-Jacques Aillagon, announced that future shows in the three-years-old program—whose previous exhibitors were Jeff Koons and Xavier Veilhan—will take place at other locations in the 17th century chateau’s estate (like, the royal stables?). This part of the article, for what it’s worth, is slightly vindicating:

Aillagon, meanwhile, questions why the same protest groups did not speak out against a show of works held at the site in 2009 by French artist Xavier Veilhan, calling the traditionalist critics “xenophobes.”

What?! The French are culturally backwards, racist, barely-closeted royalists who prefer entropy to engagement? No way.